The Phoenix Arcadia senior is labeled a workaholic by his coach, Rob Reniewicki. For good reason. Rayes is a four-year, three-sport athlete who is having an exceptional senior season in cross-country.
Athlete of the week
Kevin Rayes: The Phoenix Arcadia senior is labeled a workaholic by his coach, Rob Reniewicki. For good reason. Rayes is a four-year, three-sport athlete who is having an exceptional senior season in cross-country. Last week he repeated as the Scottsdale city champ, winning this year’s 2.9-mile race in 14:58. “He’s very talented, but he also works very hard,” Reniewicki said. Rayes, who also plays soccer and runs track, said this past summer was the first time he put in a few months of training for the cross-country season. “I can tell my fitness level is much better,” said Rayes, who is striving for a top-five finish at next week’s 4A-II state meet. I know at state I need a quicker start. I waited too long last year to get going.” He finished 11th at last year’s meet.
Week in review
Still in the running: Among the many city meets held last week, perhaps the performance by the Scottsdale Horizon boys team at the Paradise Valley district meet stood out. Considering Horizon lost two of the premier runners in the state from last year in Jim Walmsley and Ben Jankunas, the team has rebounded well. At last week’s meet, the Huskies finished second to Phoenix Shadow Mountain. Sophomore Derek Stanek led Horizon with a third-place finish last week in 17:19.
More champs: Gilbert Highland had a pair of champions at the Gilbert city meet. Senior Ann Bawden continues to prove she is among the state’s elite with a win at 19:41. Senior Jon Brown made it a sweep for the Hawks as he won the boys title in 16:42. At the Gilbert meet, each class ran a boys and girls race. Brown edged Queen Creek’s Sharod Hardt, who won the junior race in 16:43.
Region meets are next up for teams. Some events were held on Thursday, while more will be run today and others on Saturday. All 5A teams advance to next week’s state meet. But for all other classifications, qualification is earned through region meets. In 4A, the top three teams move on as well as the top 10 individuals from each region. For 3A teams, the top four teams and 15 individuals continue their seasons. And for 1A/2A, the top six teams from each region and top 20 individuals qualify for state.
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